New Zealand Ling

(Genypterus blacodes)

Pink cusk eel, Kingklip, Pink ling, Northern ling

1. What is it?

New Zealand Ling (Genypterus blacodes) are year-round spawning eel fish found in shallow shelf waters as juveniles and deeper waters as adults. They feed on a variety of crustaceans and fish species. Stocks are considered to be exploited at sustainable levels. New Zealand Ling is MSC certifed by the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) and therefore appears on the SASSI green list.

2. How was it caught or farmed?

New Zealand Ling are caught using bottom trawl nets. These nets are dragged near the sea floor at depths ranging from 100m to 200m. This type of fishing is known to cause damage to the surrounding habitats (e.g. biogenic habitats like bryozoans, mussels and sponges are especially susceptible to damage) and bycatch of many vulnerable species including birds, sharks and other fish species is an issue. As part of the MSC certification process significant steps have been taken to improve observer coverage on all vessels in order to better assess the impacts of trawling on the environment and on other species.

3. Where is it from?

New Zealand ling are caught along the coast of New Zealand and imported to South Africa. Management is considered partly effective through a total Allowable Commercial Catch (TACC) limit, no go zones for bottom trawling vessels and a no discard rule for targeted or bycatch snoek/ barracouta species.